Vettel denounces costs of junior categories 'gone wild'

ยฉ XPB 

Sebastian Vettel says the costs of going racing in the junior categories have "gone wild" and need to come down, although the Aston Martin driver admitted there was no "quick fix" to the issue.

Vettel's comments echoed concerns recently expressed by Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes boss Toto Wolff.

Hamilton believes F1 has now become a "billionaire boys' club", and says racing must become more accessible "for people with more humble origins".

"If I were to start over from a working-class family, it would be impossible for me to be here today because the other boys would have a lot more money," Hamilton said.

Wolff also recently hit out at the "absurd" costs of grassroots racing.

"What I think we can do is make sure that grassroots racing becomes more affordable, so kids that haven't got any financial background can actually be successful in the junior formulas," said the Mercedes boss.

Vettel followed suit on the topic but acknowledged that there was no "quick fix" to make motorsport more accessible.

"There's not a quick fix, but ultimately, the costs are too high," explained the Aston Martin driver. "In all honesty, if I look back to when I started, costs were lower, but they were still high.

"I mean I was very fortunate. I had Mr Gerhard Noack looking after me, who was the same man who looked after Michael [Schumacher] when he started, probably 20 years before me as a young child.

"It was already very, very expensive back then, so I think Michael was in need of help, and I was in need, because I couldn't afford it.

"I think the first season we did in very junior go karts, we managed sort of do half on our own and then we started to be very lucky to find people that supported and helped us.

"I think since then, the world has changed. I think sponsoring has changed. And probably the readiness to invest money in young kids and motor sport has changed as well. So, in short, it has always been tricky," added the four-time world champion.

"I don't think it will be a quick fix, but there are certain things that could be addressed to try and make the sport more accessible for all types of backgrounds and all children.

"It is an expensive hobby, no matter which way you look at it. But certainly it's gone wild in the last years, and got way too expensive."

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